Thursday, July 10, 2008

ICICI Considers Expanding Globally

"ICICI Bank, one of the largest in India, is considering acquisitions
to expand outside its home market at a time when many foreign rivals
are struggling because of tight credit markets, two of the bank's
executives said in an interview on Wednesday," reports the New York
Times. At a time when Indian businesses are thick into M&A's and
foreign expansion, it is very interesting to see a succesful Indian
bank getting ready to take on Global expansion, at a time of economic
crisis in the US.

According to the New York Times, "Like many banks in India, ICICI,
which is based in Mumbai, has remained relatively unscathed by the
financial market turmoil and now has about $5 billion in cash on hand
to spend on an international expansion that could include the purchase
of a "large consumer franchise" in Britain, Canada or Germany, said
Sonjoy Chatterjee, an executive director who is responsible for
international business.

ICICI, which initially focused on serving people of Indian origin in
India and abroad, already offers online saving accounts to non-Indian
customers in those three countries and is keen to build a global brand
as rising interest rates slow the growth of its consumer lending at

ICICI operates in 19 countries outside India, including the United
States, and those markets account for about 25 percent of the bank's
assets, or $30 billion.

"There is an opportunity out there because of the current market
situation," Mr. Chatterjee said in an interview in London. ICICI's
chief executive, K. V. Kamath, added that even though banks are cheap
now, "they come with huge challenges and we need to see whether we
want to take those or how to go about it."

Read the full article at--

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